Pakistan obliterated Hong Kong by eight wickets in the second match of the Asia Cup 2018. Men in Green cruised to a comfortable win as they were too good for the Hong Kong side. Hong Kong’s captain Anshuman Rath won the toss and decided to bat first. However, Hong Kong could not get going in their batting innings as they lost wickets in a cluster. Usman Khan was the chief destroyer of the Hong Kong innings.
The right-handed fast bowler scalped three wickets and gave away only 19 runs in his overs. Shadab Khan provided the first breakthrough as he hit the bullseye to send back Nizakat Khan. The Hong Kong opener lacked the basics of the game as he tried to save himself from the throw rather than grounding his bat into the crease.
Shadab Khan further jolted the Hong Kong innings when he bowled a double wicket maiden. Thus, Hong Kong could not recover as they lost their top five batsmen for just 44 runs on the board.
However, Aizaz Khan and Kinchit Shah provided some resistance as the pair added 51 runs for the sixth wicket. Nevertheless, Anshuman Rath-led could only put 116 runs on the board as no batsmen could cross the 30-run mark.
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It was always going to be a cakewalk for the Pakistan batsmen. However, they didn’t catapult their attack from the get-go. The in-form southpaw pair of Fakhar Zaman and Imam-ul-Haq put together an opening partnership of 41 runs. However, Fakhar Zaman perished in an attempt to accelerate the run-chase.
Meanwhile, Imam-ul-Haq looked in no hurry to get to the paltry total as he scored his runs cautiously and thus completed his fifty. Babar Azam scored 33 runs off 36 balls and during the course of his innings, the talisman also completed his 2000 runs in 50-overs format. The right-hander is the second joint highest to get to the personal milestone.
Pakistan will now take on arch-rivals India on 19 September at Dubai International Cricket Stadium in the Asia Cup 2018.
Brief Scores: Hong Kong – 116-10 (37.1 overs), Aizaz Khan 27 (47).
Usman Khan 3-19
Pakistan – 117-2, Imam-Ul-Haq: 50 (69)
Ehsan Khan 2-34
Pakistan won by eight wickets